Thursday, March 08, 2012

People vs. Amit (March 25, 1970)

Facts: Marcelo Amit was charged in the court with the complex crime of rape with homicide described and penalized in Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended to which he pleaded guilty. 

The trial court rendered judgment, sentencing Amit to suffer the supreme penalty of death 

Appellant claims that the penalty of death imposed upon him should be reduced to reclusion perpetua in view of the presence of three mitigating circumstance 

(1) plea of guilty 

(2) voluntary surrender 

(3) lack of intention to commit so grave a wron as the one actually committed 

The Solicitor General admits that the mitigating circumstances of plea of guilty and voluntary surrender have been proven, but denies that the mitigating circumstance of lack of intention to commit so grave a wrong as the one actually committed was similarly established. 

Issue: Whether or not the lack of intention to commit so grave a wrong as that committed can be appreciated as a mitigating circumstance 

Held: NO. At the time of the commission of the crime, appellant was 32 years of age, while his victim was 25 years his senior; his victim resisted his attempt to rape her by biting and scratching him; to subdue her, appellant boxed her and then "held her on the neck and pressed it down" while she was lying on her back and he was on top of her. These acts, the court believes, were reasonably sufficient to produce the result that they actually produced — the death of appellant's victim. Consequently, what we said in People vs. Yu, would seem to apply: The lack of intention to commit so grave a wrong as that committed cannot be appreciated in favor of an accused who employed brute force. 

The penalty of death being an indivisible penalty, it has to be imposed regardless of the presence of mitigating circumstances, especially in a case like the present where, according to the evidence of record, the crime was committed with the aggravating circumstances of nighttime and abuse of superior strength.

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